County denies Cleveland zoning request

Jake Keohen, Montgomery Messenger

The Le Sueur County Board of Commissioners considered three planning & zoning requests at its regular meeting Tuesday, April 1. The commissioners supported the recommendations of the planning board, approving two permits and denying a rezone in Cleveland Township.

Planning & Zoning Administrator Kathy Brockway presented the following requests for board consideration:

-Angie & Jeff McLaughlin, Montgomery (applicant/owner), a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) to allow applicant to operate a Level 2 Home Occupation to allow for keeping of more than two boarders (adult foster care) in a Ag Residential District in Lanesburgh Township. Approved 5-0.

-Charles & June Grams, Madison Lake, a one-year extension of a CUP to construct a single family dwelling in a Special Protection District in Elysian Township. Approved 5-0.

-Architectural Enhancements, Lake Crystal (applicant), Agripolymerix LLC, Le Center (owner), a rezone of approximately 4.77 acres from an Ag District to an Industrial District, property located in Cleveland Township, about two miles southwest of Le Center on Highway 99. The planning commission by 8-1 vote recommended denial of the application for the following reasons: This is a spot zone; the rezoning does not conform with the County Comprehensive Land Use Plan; the rezoning does not conform to the land characteristics and uses in the vicinity.

Comments from members of the audience favored the rezone, but the county board went with the planning recommendation on a 4-1 vote.

Commissioner Bob Culhane, who voted against the denial, said he hoped the ordinance could be looked at to possibly allow this (Architectural Enhancements) type of business on the state highway.

The board also granted Brockway's request to help fund ($3,500) a feasibility study on property east of Henderson where residents are requesting hookup to the Le Sueur-Henderson wastewater system.

Also at Tuesday's meeting:

• Maintenance Supervisor Jim McMillan informed the board of a State Fire Marshal Division compliance order for sprinkler system update equipment costing $2,665. McMillan also said the new roof on the jail building installed by the Schwickert Company will now cost $47,965, which is considerably less than the original estimate.

• County Assessor Dave Armstrong was given approval to purchase a new vehicle for his office staff, a 2008 Chevrolet Impala from the New Prague Auto Group, in the amount of $17,307. The assessor also informed the board that county residential values are not going down, but asking prices are lower.

• Veterans Service Officer Jim Golgart was given approval to apply for a $6,000 grant for the emergency food and shelter program, since Le Sueur County is not included in the state grant program this year. Golgart said the funds are used to help veterans in need.

• Recommendations of Personnel Coordinator Cindy Westerhouse were approved: permanent status to David Tiegs, assistant highway engineer, and Erica Miller, office assistant in human services; accept resignation/retirement of Terry Schmidt, highway maintenance worker, and resignation of Heidi Seppelt, children's mental health case manager in human services; hire Christy Brady as a full-time social worker in human services.

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